Austrian director,, won the Cannes Film Festival's top honour, the Palme d'Or, on Sunday with his feature film “Amour” (Love).
This is the second Palme d'Or for the Austrian filmmaker, who won in 2009 with "The White Ribbon".
The simple yet moving tale set almost entirely inside a Paris apartment left audiences in tears in Cannes, and it will prove a popular winner for a director considered one of the greatest working in Europe today.
The film stars two French acting icons - 85-year-old Emmanuelle Riva and 81-year-old Jean-Louis Trintignant - as an elderly couple coping with the wife's worsening health.
Love also won plaudits for its two main actors, Trintignant and Riva.
Haneke said he made the film because "I experienced something in my family that touched me." He thanked his wife and – in a rare personal comment – said he had promised her "we would never leave each other, like in the film."
The Grand Prix runner-up prize was awarded to Matteo Garrone’s “Reality,” an examination of society’s obsession with celebrities and reality television.
British directorwon the Jury Prize (the third prize) for his “The Angels’ Share”.